Game engine have come along way over the past few years. I've felt that the likes of cry engine was a bit before its time as not many people had the hardware to run the game at full throttle. Its only just recently, now that I have my new computer that I can appreciate the beauty of the environments the game had to offer. It seems to me that as the Unreal engine has been releasing its monthly updated. Visually its has caught up with it ability for vast open areas, god rays, level streaming etc. This made me evaluate both companies strategies when developing their engines. it felt like Cytec decided to go full steam ahead and blow people's minds with visual beauty, whether or not the consumer were ready for it or not. Epic games decided to keep their eye on the current power of current consumer hardware and make sure that they had as many consumer able to buy their games and be able to play without having to spend loads of money on a faster computer. I recently read an article on a website highlighting there new direction with their new portable version of the UDK for I phone as they don't yet intend to release a version for android phones because of how different the range of power all the different android phones have to offer. They want to make sure that all phones would be able to handle the ability to play game created by their engine. This reinforces my previous point, which is a good thing in a way. Some would argue that they should release it on just the more powerful android handsets.
This brings me nicely onto my next point on the current direction game engines seem to be heading. if feels like instead of making visuals more realistic as we have seen in the past few years more and more developers a trying to make the current standard of visuals able to be played on handheld devices. plus its even easier for Indi developers to take advantage of creating games. Unity engine started out as a web based engine that was able to play without the need to install and now its shifted to iphone android Xbox 360and playstation 3.
With Nintendo releasing their 3d portable devise it didn't feel like it would take long before Sony would be announcing there second PSP device. The cool thing about this is that they claimed that its able to render games at the same visual performance as you would expect to see on the playstation 3. Now that's quite an sensational claim but what I've seen so far is all the shaders and rendering capabilities are the same. But the texture size and mesh density are allot smaller in comparison. With this being rendered on such a small screen it's hard to spot any differences. With that said it still very impressive how good the graphics look and I can't wait to see more of this as it get closer to release for xmas at the end of this year.